“Quality sheet music is important for any level of musician trying to add to their repertoire,” said Adam D’Arpino in his article Five Quick Tips for Choosing Music. Whether you’re a beginner or an expert, sheet music helps to shape how you learn, perform and understand a piece.”
WHY CHOOSE SHEET MUSIC
It is a relatively inexpensive way to learn a variety of interesting and worthwhile pieces from different genres, eras, composers and countries. One can build a substantial library from sheet music both individual and from collections of songs and pieces for piano, voice or instrumental solos and ensembles.
MUSIC FOR DIFFERENT SKILL LEVELS
Sheet Music is available in many different skill levels of well-known pieces and titles. The easier versions allow beginners and intermediate musicians to learn music that is usually at a more advanced level. Numerous publishers and distributors offer a grade level assessment of their selections. This allows the potential purchaser
to get an idea of the skill level required to play the piece. If you would rather just look at a piece to decide, many online distributors offer a preview of one or two pages to view.
Piano players and other musicians have another option called a “Fake Book.” These are collections of very well-known popular songs with a written melody and chord names. This allows musicians to play the melody with their own version of the chords to accompany the melody.
WHERE TO GET SHEET MUSIC
One can purchase sheet music from numerous sources. Your local music store is probably one of the quickest, most convenient places to buy or order music. Music stores do not have everything available in the store but they will usually be more than happy to order it for you.
Another source is from the publisher directly. You can easily find phone numbers and addresses and order what you want. If the piece is out of print—you have some options. You can order it and wait for a reprint or try other music stores, schools or libraries. Music teachers, both school and private, have access to many selections in their own collections and collections of colleagues.
Computers give easy access to a myriad of sites to view, listen to and order music. Sometimes sheet music is free of charge online. Try these websites:
PUBLIC DOMAIN SHEET MUSIC
This is free sheet music! Music created or published before 1923 is free with possibly some exceptions. Music published after 1963 is probably still copyrighted—caveat emptor! (Let the buyer beware.)
You can sell public domain music e.g. record yourself and sell it on a compact disc (CD). Some music copyrighted between 1923 and 1963 lost their copyright because they did not renew—they then became free. Investigate the vast amount of sheet music available, both online and off.
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